Nán Jīng Yǔ Huā Lǜ Chá, 南京雨花绿茶, Nanjing Rain Flower Green Tea
C. sinensis var. unknown; Yuhuatai, Rain Flower Terrace, Nanjing, Jiangsu, 20-50m; early Spring, 2017, immature bud and leaf, traditional hand-made tea, pine needle shaping, green tea process; #TodaysTea, #今天的茶, #JīnTiāndeChá#Tea, #茶, #Chá.
The small 1-2.5 cm long, dry leaves are relatively pine needle straight, a dark brown and greeny-silver colour and have a sour, “old,” and vaguely fruity scent. The wet leaves are uniformly yellowish-green, and open up to reveal plump small buds with one to two leaves, with a biscuity, nutty, marzipan aroma.
3-4g of dry leave was infused in a clay pot with 150ml of water for 20-30sec.@80-90 deg. C., producing a pale yellow tea liquor with a faint, sweet, honeyish scent. in the mouth it is creamy, mildly stimulating and fresh, with a sweet finish, followed by a lingering, gentle, minerality, whilst the taste is pleasant, buttery, and semi-sweet, but seems somewhat muted.
Green tea usually has a 1-2 year shelf life depending on storage. This tea is now 4 years old. It has moved from China to Europe and back. It was clear stored in Europe, and shelf stored in Shanghai. Inspire of this it has held up quite well, but perhaps is now nearing its end.
The name Yǔ Huā is from a Buddhist legend where a Zen master lectured around the area of Nanjing, declaring that if his teachings were true, flowers would rain from the heavens. When this Zen master taught his dharma, flowers rained! — Perhaps thistle would be better translated as, “Raining Flowers” Green Tea? 😜